to host Alateen group
St. Mary’s Hospital and Clinics will facilitate an Alateen group designed for teens whose life has been affected by someone else’s drinking. The first meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, January 21 at 7:00 p.m. The group will continue to meet every Wednesday at that time in the hospital’s downstairs conference room. There is no charge for the support group which will be facilitated by Michelle Crea, SMHC staff.
“Sometimes, the drinker may not live with the family anymore, or may have stopped drinking, but the people left behind may still have some issues that are best resolved while they get on with their lives,” said Crea. “I went to Alateen after my father was killed in an auto accident as a result of alcohol. It was a great relief to me to understand that others were facing the same problems as I was. Acting as facilitator for this group will help me give back a little of what I got at a time when I really needed it.”
The purpose of an Alateen support group is to confidentially share experiences, strength and hope with others, discuss difficulties, learn effective ways to cope with problems, encourage one another, help understand the principles of the Al-Anon program and learn how to use the Alateen’s Twelve Traditions.
“Teens can sometimes feel as though they are the only ones with a particular problem and finding out that others share their challenges can provide an enormous sense of relief,” said Sr. Barbara Jean Glodowski, SMHC Mission Integration. “We would like to provide a safe, supported opportunity for kids who may need a place to share and learn.”
According to the Alateen website, support group members learn that compulsive drinking is a disease; they can detach themselves emotionally from the drinker’s problems while continuing to love the person; they are not the cause of anyone else’s drinking or behavior; they cannot change or control anyone but themselves; they have spiritual and intellectual resources with which to develop their own potential, no matter what happens at home; and they can build satisfying and rewarding life experiences for themselves.
The Alateen website, www.al-anon-alateen.org/alateen.html has a 20 question survey to help teens decide if the group might be for them.
For more information or if transportation is a problem please call Michelle Crea or Sr. Barbara Jean, SMHC, 962.3251. No registration is necessary. Participants can either enter through the front door of the hospital, 701 Lewiston St., and follow the signs or they can park behind the hospital and enter the conference room directly.